Noel Erskine, Technology Coordinator Norris Schools

Welcome to my technology blog.
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💥 Tech Tools - Free VR viewer, Free Apps and More! In this weeks post.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Get your free cardboard VR viewer - Complete this form. <--- FREE

No, it's not SciFi - Google’s Bluetooth headphones do real-time language translation COOL! 

Pear Deck + New Google Slides Add-ons - Engage each learner in the classroom and give each student in the classroom an opportunity to ‘talk.’  Give it a try.  Ask our very own Becky Wilhelm @WilhelmBecky She loves this tool.  (Thanks for the tip!) 

New features in Google’s Contacts app on Android

Great tool for the Techies!  -How to Create Screencast GIFs 
I have downloaded and started using this tool - pretty cool. (It's an installable program on your computer.) 

EDU in 90: Our Favorite Chromebook Shortcuts - Great short 2-minute video

Looking for high-quality free images? Here are the best sites

Open Educational Resources and Creative Commons licensing have truly opened up the world of publishing and free resources for students and their teachers. - Article with resources! 

2 QR Code readers - Online -no install!

Note- You will have to allow the website access to your camera for it to be able to scan.  (This one is OK, but only seems to use the webcam view only and is a smaller area for scanning.)  I Like this one if you have a flip Chromebook (Our Acer Spin for staff or the Lenovo Yoga N23 for students.)  It uses the world facing camera by default! 

Free Apps:

Reg. $1.99 - Runtastic Pull-ups Workout PRO Android or IOS

RoomScan Pro (iOS) - Pretty cool app for measuring. Now Free - IOS ver. 

A few Tech articles from the homepage:

Norris Middle Students utilizing online tools as a part of new Envision math program. - Check it out.

Norris Students utilize Google Tools and Google Cast in Preparation for Real-World Presentations. Check it out.

Norris High Students Making Alaska Connections.- Great video conference connections in Mr. Allen's classes. 

There are a lot of cool things happening with tech in the classrooms at Norris - If you would like to be featured with something - let me know! 

Google Classroom Training: Google recently updated Training Center Lessons, so that they can learn how to share assignments (Requires login) more easily and collect them effortlessly.(Requires login) 

Free eBooks
FREE Kindle eBooks - OpenStax eTextbooks 

Large list of Free Classics on Kindle eBooks - Check out the list here

Interesting tech statistics: 
  • By 2020, there will be 20.8 billion connected “things” - Gartner
  • Cyber Crime Costs Projected To Reach $2 Trillion by 2019 -Forbes
  • Today, there are more than 80,000 education apps available for download through Apple’s App Store; 72 percent of those are aimed at toddlers and preschoolers.
  • Sixty-nine percent of U.S. adults are now social media users, according to data from the Pew Research Center.
  • Gartner Says Almost 3 Million Personal and Commercial Drones Will Be Shipped in 2017. -Gartner
  • Public schools now spend over $3 billion per year on digital educational content as of 2017. Education Week

💥 Tech tools and thoughts - Teachers lose paychecks do to phishing eBooks, apps, tech tools & tips and more in this weeks posting!

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

School Employees paychecks go up in 🔥
Atlanta Public Schools to step up security measures, increase email filters after phishing attack causes payday problems.

I hate to be the grim reaper... but always be careful with emails and web links! We do not want you to fall victim to this.  (This is the reason we have really been pushing our phishing awareness and security campaign. -KnowBe4 product) 

Tech tools, web tools and more: 

I know Google Forms now has quizzing built it... but... Ten Things Flubaroo Can Do for You may be what you are looking for if you want more features for Google Forms and quizzing. (Partial credit, score range based responses and more using Flubaroo.) 

Need to schedule parent meetings with time slots.... Calendly is a tool that syncs with Google Calendar and makes scheduling meetings super simple. No more prolonged back-and-forth email chains. 

3 Classroom Math Activities with Adobe Spark - How do your students share their learning in the math classroom? When it comes to movie-making, designing a website, or creating a social media graphic, we don’t often associate these activities with mathematics. But students of all ages can jump into open-ended creation tools to tell the story of their learning in any subject...

💥 Math Tools for Chrome -  Powerful math tools that you & your students can use with the Chrome browser (and Chromebooks). 

Amazing Mobile Features of Google Classroom   -- Digital handwriting, Taking pictures, Recording videos .. and more! 

Brain Breaks: 7 YouTube Channels to Get Kids Moving & Grooving 

Google Slide tips:

8 Google Slides Tips You Should Know Before Your Next Presentation.

Grids, Timelines, and Notes in Google Slides (Great add-on for free pics too!) Thanks to Jessie Andre for sharing this one out! 

Great Google Docs tips, add-ons, etc...

How to Link to a Specific Paragraph in Google Docs - Via BetterCloud Monitor | If you ever have a Google Doc that’s tens or hundreds of pages long, it can be difficult to find a specific section of text that someone has asked you to reference. To save time, it can be valuable to provide a direct link to a specific paragraph in your document

Have you looked at Voice Typing in Google yet? 

New and Improved Voice Typing Commands in Google Docs  (Great for special needs too!) 
Via BetterCloud Monitor | You might have known that you can use your voice to type in Google Docs, but late last year, Google released some new and improved features. You can now specify text color, highlight text, add links, insert comments, and switch to a column layout–just by using your voice. 

Voice Typing in Google Docs is a Game-Changer!  - Check this out ...  Kasey Bell is an award-winning digital learning consultant, national speaker, and blogger with a passion for technology. As a former ELA teacher, I am naturally drawn to technology that supports reading and writing. Google Docs is fully-loaded with some features that can save us time in and out of the classroom, and.... 

Google Classroom: 

How to Infuse Google Classroom with the Power of YouTube - Some great tips in this article! 

This one looks like a winner! Teacher Advisor provides 100% free, teacher-vetted, and standards-aligned instructional materials for K-5 elementary math teachers. We're constantly making improvements, and it'll never cost you a cent to take advantage of the cutting-edge technology on Our tool leverages IBM Watson™ technology to help you find recommended standards, lessons, activities, and strategies directly targeted to your search criteria, so that you spend far less time selecting highly effective resources for your students. Thanks to our very own Dr. Jenny Piening for finding this one. 

Free Kindle Books:


Price: $FREE
***Ranked #3 in the App Store under Education***
**** Best Elementary APP Awards 2011 for our First and Second Grade apps ***** 
Note - iPhone only app (But they do run on iPads too.) 

Price: $FREE
TELL YOUR STORY with Scribble Press the ALL-NEW, creative bookmaking App for kids!

Designed for the classroom and at home, Scribble Press is a creative platform for children to imagine, write.

Some great resources from Google - (And a signup link at the bottom.) 

2+2 for Educators, September 2017
Looking for helpful videos and resources for digital citizenship and safety? Read on for more in this month’s 2+2 for Educators.

2 Things to Know for Educators

1. Teach Online Safety with Be Internet Awesome
As classroom technology usage increases, it’s important for students to be prepared to make smart decisions online. Developed in collaboration with online safety experts, Be Internet Awesome teaches the fundamentals of digital citizenship and safety so students can explore the online world with confidence. In addition to a robust curriculum for teachers, the program includes Interland, an adventure-packed online game that puts these critical lessons into hands-on practice. Access resources at
2. Explore EDU in 90 on YouTube
We recently launched EDU in 90, a new video series from Google for Education. Based on feedback from educators, the episodes are designed to share product news, program updates, and tutorials in a quick, concise format. Check out some of our top episodes below:
We’re planning the second season of EDU in 90 and would love your feedback on possible episode topics - share your thoughts with this short survey.

2 Resources for Educators

1. Training Center Resources for Online Safety
Looking for more resources to build your digital safety chops? Head on over to the Training Center, where we recently introduced a free Digital Citizenship and Safety course. Through interactive online content, you’ll learn fundamental lessons of digital citizenship and safety, as well as strategies for integrating them into your curriculum. Check out the full Digital Citizenship and Safety course - including lessons on savvy searching, avoiding phishing and scams, and online reputation management.
2. Tip: Use Classroom to share with large groups
Curious about sharing digital citizenship lessons and other information to large groups? Learn from Sarah Jolley (@sarahaj47), a Digital Coach and Social Studies teacher from Elko, Nevada:
“Our school has used Google Classroom as a vehicle to share important information across large groups of students. By creating a Classroom class for an entire grade (or even the entire school), we’re able to easily share student surveys, digital citizenship lessons, school announcements, videos, and other resources at scale.”

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Want to know about the latest from Google for Education, but don’t have much time? Check out EDU in 90.